The Los Angeles Rams have announced Matthew Castaneda, Narciso Diaz & Robert Metzger as their High School Coach of the Year finalists. The Rams are giving fans an opportunity to vote for this year's High School Coach of the Year at therams.com/coachoftheyear. The voting will close Thursday, December 22. The Coach of the Year winner will receive a surprise vacation and a $3,000 donation from the Rams in support of their school's football program.
This season, the Rams recognized 10 local high school football coaches as part of their High School Coach of the Week program. Each honoree received a $1,000 equipment grant courtesy of the Rams. The winning coaches were awarded because of their emphasis on the importance of education and service along with their embodiment of leadership and character.
More than 17,000 fans participated in online voting to nominate and select the finalists, who will be recognized during an on-field moment at the Rams-Broncos Christmas Day matchup at SoFi Stadium. The winner who receives the most fan votes will be announced during the recognition. Since the final voting opened yesterday, December 6, the team has received over 40,000 votes for the High School Coach of the Year winner. Below is more information about the three local coaches who are the Rams High School Coach of the Year finalists:
Matthew Castaneda is the head football coach at Diamond Bar High School (DBHS). This was his first season coaching DBHS's varsity football team. Castaneda has coached high school football for 13 seasons and has served as a head coach for five seasons. This season, DBHS finished with a 12-2 record, qualifying for CIF Southern Section Football Playoffs and advancing to the Division 9 Championship game.
Narciso Diazis the head football coach at Benjamin Franklin Senior High School. Diaz is a northeast Los Angeles native as well as an alumnus and former quarterback of the Franklin Panthers. During his nine-season stint as head coach of the Panthers, Diaz guided the 2016 Panther football team to a CIF LA City Section Championship and the CIF State Playoffs with a 13-2 record. In 2016, Diaz was the CIF LA City Section Division III Coach of the Year and a Los Angeles Rams Coach of the Week honoree. This season under Diaz, the Franklin Panthers finished with an undefeated regular season (10-0) and a Northern League Championship. It was the Panthers first Open Division playoff berth in school history. The Panthers have had an 18-4 record over the past two seasons.
Robert Metzger is the head football coach at Oak Hills High School. Metzger has served as a high school football coach for 27 years, spending 13 seasons with Oaks Hills. Metzger has been the head coach of the Oak Hills Bulldogs for the past two seasons. This season, Oaks Hills finished with an 11-1 record, qualifying for CIF Southern Section Football Playoffs and advancing to the second round of the Division 2 playoffs.
Since returning home to Los Angeles in 2016, the Rams have recognized 78 High School Coach of the Week honorees and the team has awarded a total of $107,500 to benefit their high school football programs.